Gender Equity Course
Class Time: 6:30-9:00 pm, Wednesdays, Jan 27 to Apr 21.
This course will focus on research involving gender issues in science education and strategies to promote effective instruction for all students in your classrooms. You will use the course materials, your video tapes of your teaching, and other curricular materials from your classroom to reflect on your teaching. At the conclusion of the course, you will develop a professional action plan relating to a topic covered in the course to be implemented in your classroom during the following semester.
Your grade will be determined by the following components:
* American Institutes for Research. (1998). Gender gaps: Where schools still fail our children. Washington, DC: American Association for University Women Educational Foundation.
1. Reflective Journals: Each week you will analyze, synthesize, and reflect on the readings, the class discussion, and your own teaching in a one-page, single-spaced reflection paper. Your ideas must be supported by data from the sources listed above. (180 pts)
2. Biography Review: You will choose a biography of a woman scientist/engineer/inventor at the reading level of the students that you teach and write a one-page review of the book. Criteria for the review will be developed in class. (100 pts)
3. Video Coding Report: You will view the videos of your teaching recorded prior to the class and code them for gender differences in interactions. Your report should include your original coding data and a quantitative and qualitative analysis of the data. (100 pts)
4. Strategies Brochure: You will produce a brochure for other teachers outlining gender equity issues and providing strategies to help ensure equitable classrooms. You may work in pairs or individually on this brochure. (100 pts)
5. Research Review: You will choose a topic of interest in the area of gender and science education and will find five journal articles on the topic. You will write a short paper (5 pages or less) addressing why you chose this topic, summarizing the research and discussing how knowledge of this topic will enhance your teaching. At least three of the articles must come from research journals, e.g., Journal of Research in Science Teaching, Science Education, Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering, School Science and Mathematics. The final two sources may be from practitioner journals (e.g., Science and Children, The Science Teacher) or from on-line sources. (200 pts)
6. Action Plan: You will produce a professional action plan focusing on one area of your teaching relating to gender equity. The plan will be implemented in the semester following the course. (200 pts).
This syllabus is subject to change by the instructor based on the instructional needs of the students.
Statement for Academic Dishonesty
Academic dishonesty is fundamental to the activities and principles of a university. All members of the academic community must be confident that each person's work has been responsibly and honorably acquired, developed, and presented. Any effort to gain advantage not given to all students is dishonest whether or not the effort is successful. The academic community regards academic dishonesty as an extremely serious matter, with serious consequences that range from probation to expulsion. When in doubt about plagiarism, paraphrasing, quoting, or collaboration, consult the course instructor.
Statement for ADA
If you have a disability and need accommodations, (for example, extended testing time, note taking, large print materials), please inform your instructor privately as soon as possible. In most circumstances, students with disabilities seeking academic accommodations should also register with the Access Office, A048 Brady Commons, 882-4696. As necessary, the Access Office will review documentation about your disability and about the need for accommodations you are requesting. The Access Office will then assist in planning for any necessary accommodation.
* Barinaga, M. (11 March 1994). Surprises across the cultural divide. Science, 263, 1468-1469, 1472.
* Daisey, P. (1997). Promoting equity in secondary science and mathematics classrooms with biography projects. School Science and Mathematics, 97(8), 413-418.
* American Association of University Women Educational Foundation. (1998). Separated by sex: A critical look at single-sex education for girls. Washington, DC: Author.
* Angier, N. (1994, June 21). Feminists and Darwin: Scientists try closing the gap. The New York Times.
* Askew, S., & Ross, C. (1988). Boys don't cry: Boys and sexism in education. Bristol, PA: Open University Press.
Testing and Assessment
* Latham, A. S. (1997/1998). Gender differences on assessments. Educational Leadership, 88-89.
You are to have three (3) video tapes made of yourself as soon as possible if you have not already done so. Here are the guidelines on videotaping:
1. Each taping session should be a minimum of 30 minutes.
I would prefer that you space the sessions out by at least a week.
Choose ONE of the following actvities and describe your results in your journal. Don't forget to include your own reaction/reflection.
1. Choose a video or computer game and analyze it for equity and "goodness" according to the criteria given by the Through the Glass Wall project. See the following web site for criteria. (You don't have to analyze it for math quality.) http://www.terc.edu/mathequity/gw/html/MEGSpaper.html#megs
2. Visit a computer store or video arcade and observe the ages of the people present (pre-teen, teen, 20-30, 30-50, over 50), the sex, and what they are doing (working, customer, playing games (or purchasing), watching others play (or purchase)). You may want to conduct brief interviews with some of the people there if you feel comfortable doing so.
3. Observe an elective class in your school district that relates to technology, e.g., auto mechanics, electronics tech, CAD, computer programming, word processing. Interview the teacher about gender related issues in the class.
4. Interview a counselor in your school district about the criteria used to counsel students into technology related classes, e.g., grades, career plans (student perceived, counselor perceived), parent request, other??
5. Go through an on-line or CD-ROM clipart program (one that includes 100s or 1000s of pictures) and analyze the pictures with technology (computers, tools, etc.). What roles are females shown in? What roles are males shown in?
6. Another data-gathering activity of your choice related to technology.
First Draft Due March 31, 1999
Objective: This section should be a short, measurable objective describing your proposed plan. Examples: To develop and implement an informational session for middle school girls and their parents on gender equity issues in science; To incorporate biographies of women scientists into three of my curricular units; To improve my feedback to student responses to both female and male students.
Rationale: This section should contain background information indicating why you chose your objective. You should include information that relates to your classroom (e.g., my units currently contain information only on male scientists; in my videotapes for the course I discovered that I only provide specific feedback 7% of the time). You should also provide information on the research in this area from your texts and readings from this course (e.g., research indicates that providing female role models in science improves students' attitudes towards women in science).
Procedures for Achieving Objective (including Timeline): This section should be the bulk of your Action Plan. You should indicate specific steps you will take to achieve your objective and the dates by which these steps will be completed. For example,
1. Do library/internet research on women scientists for inclusion into the soil/water unit (July 1, 1999).
Documentation that Action Plan has been Completed: This section should describe all relevant documentation that you will submit upon completion of your Action Plan. Everyone should include a summary statement of your reflections on implementation. Other items to include might be lesson plans, handouts, evaluation forms, examples of student work, coding sheets, etc.
Updated November 1, 2005